The markets were mixed today on Wall Street, with declining issues outnumbering advancing issues across the board.
At the close: DJIA: +0.14%, S&P 500: -0.24%, NASDAQ: -0.26%.
1) With consumers no longer viewing personal computers as the number one gift, and problems that go far beyond a weak economy, preliminary worldwide PC shipments declined in the fourth quarter. According to Gartner, the world’s leading information technology research and advisory company, PC shipments on a global basis totaled 90.3 million units in the fourth quarter, representing a 4.9 percent drop from the prior year… (Read more.)
2) The financial sector recently logged its best performance in almost a decade. Between cutting costs and monetary easing from the Federal Reserve, banks rallied across the board last year. Investors are now looking to earnings to sustain the momentum, but this earnings season could be tepid according to estimates.
Earnings growth expectations for financials have been cut to 8.7 from almost 16 percent since the end of the fourth quarter. This week, some of the biggest names in the industry and S&P 500 will announce earnings. Using data from Bespoke Investment Group, a market research firm, let’s take a look at the firms and their likelihood to beat estimates… (Read more.)